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Personal independence payment (PIP) is a benefit for people aged 16 or over who have difficulty with daily living activities or mobility. You may qualify for PIP if you have a physical disability, a long-term health condition, mental health problem or a learning disability.

PIP is replacing Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for those aged 16 and over. If you're currently getting DLA, the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) will invite you to apply to transfer to PIP some time before February 2021.

DLA will remain as a benefit for children aged under 16.


Like DLA, you can claim PIP if you're in or out of work, or if you're studying, and it's not affected by your income or any savings you might have. You don’t need to have paid national insurance contributions. PIP uses a points system to decide whether you qualify, and at what rate.

Who can claim?

To claim you must:

  • be 16 or over
  • have been present in Great Britain for at least 2 out of the past 3 years*
  • score enough points to pass the daily living and/or mobility assessment*
  • have satisfied the daily living and/or mobility assessment for at least 3 months before claiming and be likely to satisfy the assessment for at least 9 months after claiming.*

* These rules don't apply to children turning 16 who are terminally ill.

Special rules for terminally ill children

Terminally ill children who turn 16 can continue to get DLA rather than PIP. A DLA award under the special rules for the terminally ill child will continue until the end of the existing award, or until your child is selected to claim PIP as part of the process of moving all remaining adult DLA claimants onto PIP.

If your child is seriously ill and death is a possibility within 6 months, they will automatically qualify for the enhanced rate of the daily living component and they won’t have to take part in an assessment. If this applies to your child, ask their doctor for a DS1500 certificate and send this to the DWP after you have phoned to make a claim.

What can the money be used for?

PIP helps meet the extra costs associated with living with a disability or a long term health condition, including:

  • higher heating bills
  • special diets, clothing or equipment
  • taxi fares
  • additional laundry or cleaning.

It can also be spent on whatever you wish, such as outings, special interests or holidays, or put away into a savings account (although beware of saving it beyond £6000 if you get any means-tested benefit, as it would reduce or even stop that benefit being paid).

The benefit is made up of 2 parts, called components:

  1. help with daily activities such as personal care
  2. help with getting around (mobility)

Depending on your needs, you may qualify for one of these components, or for both at the same time.

How to apply

Call the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP):

PIP new claims line:

0800 917 2222

Textphone 0800 917 7777

If you are your young person's appointee you can make the call on their behalf.

You’ll be asked to complete 2 forms:

1. Personal Independence Payment claim form (PIP1 form)

  • Usually completed over the phone with a DWP worker. If you have difficulties using a phone, a paper form can be sent by post.
  • The form asks basic questions such as your name, contact details, nationality, bank account details and for details of the main health professional supporting them.
  • This form is also used to check that your young person meets the main basic qualifying conditions. For example, that they are at least 16 and meet certain tests linked to their immigration status and presence in the UK.
  • Once the DWP has received the signed PIP1 form and established that your young person meets the basic qualifying conditions, you'll be sent a questionnaire called 'How Your Disability Affects You' (PIP2).

2. How your Disability Affects You questionnaire (PIP2 form)

  • This form focusses on gathering information about your young person's ability to do a range of different activities. It's your opportunity to give a detailed explanation of how their condition affects them, so be sure to give as much detail as possible.
  • You can send evidence to support your claim, such as a letter from your GP, school, social worker or other professionals and people who support your young person.
  • The more supporting evidence you provide, the better the chances that a decision can be made without the need for a face-to-face assessment.
  • You must complete and return the form within 1 month of the date it was posted to you. If you need longer, call the PIP Enquiry Line on 0800 121 4433 to ask for an extension.

For help you can read the completing the PIP form guide.

After returning the form, you’ll probably be asked to attend a face-to-face consultation with an independent health professional.

The points system

To get PIP you must score a certain number of points according to how well you can carry out 10 daily living activities and 2 mobility activities. You cannot score points for anything not on the list.

10 daily living activities

• preparing food

• eating and drinking (taking nutrition)

• managing therapy or monitoring a health condition

• washing and bathing

• managing toilet needs or incontinence

• dressing and undressing

• speaking (communicating verbally)

• reading and understanding signs, symbols and words

• mixing with people (engaging with other people face-to-face)

• making decisions about money (making budgeting decisions).

2 mobility activities

• planning and following a journey

• moving around.

Need more detail?

Money Advice Unit (MAU) has created a clear, in depth factsheet on Personal Independence Payments:

Who can support you with your application?

DWP PIP General Enquiry Line

0800 121 4433

The charity, Contact

Freephone helpline: 0808 808 3555

info@contact.org.uk

Disability Rights UK

Online information including a guide to claiming PIP:

www.disabilityrightsuk.org


Citizens Advice

If your claim is rejected first time around, don't give up. The organisations above can help you with your appeal.

If you receive this funding- what else can you get?

PIP is never treated as income in calculating other benefits. In fact, getting
PIP can actually lead to an increase in other benefits, or help you qualify
for other entitlements.

Other benefits and increased benefit rates

Carer’s Allowance

If a young person gets the daily living component of PIP at either rate
(standard or enhanced) you may be able to get Carer‘s Allowance, or a carer's element within universal credit.
You must be providing at least 35 hours of care each week. To get Carer‘s
Allowance, you must not be a full-time student and not be earning more
than a set amount after certain deductions and costs each week.

Learn more about Carer's Allowance


Child Tax Credit

If a young person for whom you receive tax credits gets PIP, your Child
Tax Credit payments will increase. This is because you will qualify for
an extra disability element. You will also get a further severely disabled
child element if they have been awarded the daily living component at
the enhanced rate. The disability and severe disability elements can be
backdated in line with the PIP award, but only if you tell the tax credit
office within 1 month of the date on the decision letter awarding PIP.

Universal Credit

Universal Credit is replacing tax credits and other means-tested benefits for people of working age. If you are getting Universal Credit and your young person receives PIP, you will qualify for extra Universal Credit payments. These extra payments will be made at a higher rate if they get the PIP daily living component at the enhanced rate.

Pension Credit

If you are a pensioner who gets additional money in your pension credit for caring for a disabled young person, this amount can be increased if the young person is awarded PIP.


Employment and Support Allowance

If a young person gets Employment and Support Allowance, an award
of the enhanced daily living component of PIP may lead to an increase
in their Employment and Support Allowance. Let the office dealing with
Employment and Support Allowance know about a new award of PIP, or
any change to the existing award. It may also mean that a young person could claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) whilst studying, as they would class as a disabled student, but this does mean that the parents child tax credit or universal credit for that young person would stop.


Help with rent and council tax

An award of PIP may lead to extra Housing Benefit if you are not already getting your rent met in full. A PIP award for a dependant young person may also lead to more help towards your council tax bill. If a young person is 18 or over and receives the daily living component of PIP at any rate you might qualify to be ‘discounted’ as a carer for council tax. Depending on who else lives in your home this could lead to more help with your council tax.

Exemption from ‘benefit cap’

If a young person for whom you claim benefits as part of your family gets
PIP, you will be exempt from the household benefit cap which limits the
amount of benefit that an out-of-work family can receive.

Help with transport

Blue Badge for disabled parking

A young person will automatically be entitled to a Blue Badge for disabled parking if they score 8 or more mobility points for walking or 10 points for planning or following a journey. New Blue Badge scheme criteria will also extend eligibility to people who:

  • cannot undertake a journey without there being a risk of serious harm to their health or safety, or that of any other person
  • cannot undertake a journey without it causing them considerable psychological distress
  • have very considerable difficulty when walking (both the physical act and experience of walking).

Help with road tax

If your young person is awarded the mobility component of PIP at the
enhanced rate, you may be exempt from paying road tax. If they qualify
for the mobility component at the standard rate you may be eligible for a
50% reduction instead.

Help with getting a car

If your young person is awarded the mobility component of PIP at the enhanced rate, you can hire or buy a car through the Motability Scheme. To be eligible, their award of the enhanced rate mobility component must have at least 12 months left to run. If you’re unable to drive and need help to pay for lessons, or help to get a deposit for a car through the scheme, then you may qualify for grant assistance.

0300 123 4043 - Hertfordshire County Council customer call centre

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